SZOKE BACK ON TOP
SHANNONVILLE, ON Jordan Szoke scored his first Parts Canada Superbike Championship win in almost two years at the opening round of the season at Shannonville Motorsport Park Sunday.
The Brantford, ON rider stuck his Canadian Kawasaki Motors Kawasaki ZX-10R past the Picotte Performance / Yamaha / Toyota Yamaha YZF-R1 of Kevin Lacombe at the end of the backstraight on lap 4 of the restarted seven-lap race and went on to claim his first victory since he won in Mont-Tremblant, QC in August of 2004.
The triumph was Kawasaki's first in the national feature class since Tom Kipp won at Mont-Tremblant in 2003.
"It's been too long since I've been on top of the box," said Szoke, a two-time Superbike champ. "It's been a long time coming for both me and Kawasaki. But I never lost confidence in myself."
Lacombe, from Granby, QC settled for second and defending series champion Francis Martin of Rock Forest, QC was a close third on his Team Suzuki / Blackfoot Suzuki GSX-R1000.
Right behind Martin was the second Picotte Performance / Yamaha / Toyota Yamaha YZF-R1 of Pascal Picotte, who put in a brave ride to fourth despite struggling with four broken vertebrae, a broken toe and banged up knees suffered in a crash last month.
Szoke's teammate Kipp of Chardon, OH, who started on pole, completed the top five on a Kawasaki ZX-10R.
The race, originally scheduled for 14 laps of the 4.0km (2.5-mile) Shannonville 'Long Track', was stopped after six laps, with Szoke in the lead, when Trevor MacDonald crashed exiting the Esses. MacDonald was not seriously injured.
Lacombe grabbed the lead off the restart while Szoke had to charge his way up from fourth off the line. He was into second by the end of the first lap and traded the lead with Lacombe on lap 3 before getting ahead for good on the following lap.
In other action at Shannonville, Szoke took the lead on lap 2 and went on to win the opening round of the Hindle Exhaust Pro 600 Sport Bike Championship on his Kawasaki ZX-6RR. Clint McBain of Calgary placed second aboard the Team Suzuki / Blackfoot Suzuki GSX-R600 and Lacombe completed the podium on his Yamaha YZF-R6.
Karl Daigle of Roxton Pond, QC led the International Motorcycle SUPERSHOW Amateur 600 Sport Bike feature all the way on his Honda CBR600RR. London, ON's Simon Blue came back from a nasty practice crash on Saturday to place second on his Kawasaki ZX-6RR and polesitter Ross Millson of Hamilton was third on a Suzuki GSX-R600.
Defending class champion Darren James of North Vancouver won the Canadian Thunder feature in convincing fashion aboard his Buell.
Brantford, ON's Robert Busby led all the way from pole to win the 10-lap Suzuki SV650 National Cup feature.
Action from Shannonville can be seen later this summer on TSN and TSN HD.
The Parts Canada Superbike Championship continues at Le Circuit Mont-Tremblant in Mont-Tremblant, QC June 2-4.
Results from Sunday's opening round of the Parts Canada Superbike Championship at Shannonville Motorsport Park, showing finishing position, rider name, hometown, motorcycle and laps completed:
1.Jordan Szoke, Brantford, ON, Kawasaki, 7; 2. Kevin Lacombe, Granby, QC, Yamaha, 7; 3. Francis Martin, Rock Forest, QC, Suzuki, 7; 4. Pascal Picotte, St-Cecil Milton, QC, Yamaha, 7; 5. Tom Kipp, Chardon, OH, Kawasaki, 7; 6. Erick Beausejour, Val Senneville, QC, Honda, 7; 7. Frank Trombino, Kleinburg, ON, Kawasaki, 7; 8. Jean-Paul Tache, North Bay, ON, Suzuki, 7; 9. Andrew Nelson, Kars, ON, Yamaha, 7; 10. Csaba Werner, North York, ON, Suzuki, 7; 11. Sean Heydorn, Aurora, ON, Honda, 7; 12. Zenon Nelson, Bowmanville, ON, Suzuki, 7; 13. Elie Daccache, Ottawa, ON, Suzuki, 7; 14. Larry Orde, Lakefield, ON, Yamaha, 7* Did not finish 2nd Part Thomas Macsanszky, Richmond Hill, ON, Yamaha, 6; Matt McBride, Mississauga, ON, Suzuki, 5; Jeff Williams, Harrowsmith, ON, Kawasaki, 4; Clint McBain, Calgary, AB, Suzuki, 2 Excluded from 2nd Part Matthew Bushe, Castleton, ON, Suzuki Did not start 2nd Part Todd Scott, Bedford, NS, Suzuki; Trevor MacDonald, Hudson, QC, Suzuki Did not start 1st Part Gilles Biron, Nicolet, QC, Kawasaki; Bill Card, Wellesley, ON, Suzuki; Chris Peris, Calgary, AB, Yamaha; Louie Raffa, St-Marthe, QC, Yamaha
* -- Larry Orde penalized four positions for jump start
Parts Canada Superbike Championship point standings after Sunday's opening round of the series at Shannonville Motorsport Park, showing position, rider name and point total:
1.Jordan Szoke, 54; 2. Kevin Lacombe, 42; 3. Francis Martin, 38; 4. Tom Kipp, 33; 5. Pascal Picotte, 32; 6. Erick Beausejour, 27; 7. Frank Trombino, 25; 8. Jean-Paul Tache, 23; 9. Andrew Nelson, 21; 10. Csaba Werner, 19; 11. Sean Heydorn, 17; 12. Zenon Nelson, 15; 13. Elie Daccache, 13; 14. Larry Orde, 12; 15. Clint McBain, 3